Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Don't try this at home

It was hard to watch the 3rd round Internazionali BNL d'Italia match between Svetlana Kuznetsova and Flavia Pennetta because it was a stunning display of errors, interrupted occasionally by brilliant shot-making from both players. Kuznetsova created a total of 22 break point opportunities, yet converted only five of them. The match became Flavia Pennetta's to lose, and she indeed found a way to lose it.

Kuznetsova took the first set 6-3, Pennetta took the second, 6-3, and then--just when she could have taken advantage of Kuznetsova's errant ball-striking--she once again faded away in the third set, just as she did in Stuttgart against Dinara Safina. Pennetta failed to win a game in the third set--just like in Stuttgart.

Defending champion Jelena Jankovic had an easy time of it when her opponent, Kateryna Bondarenko, had to retire because of a viral illness. Victoria Azarenka defeated Caroline Wozniacki 6-2, 6-2, and Maria Jose Martinez Sanchez--not content to just take out Amelie Mauresmo and Marion Bartoli--defeated Nadia Petrova, 6-4, 6-7, 6-4.

Ana Ivanovic is out, defeated 6-1, 3-6, 6-4 by Agnieszka Radwanska. Radwanska was down 0-4 in the third set, by the way. Patty Schnyder's glory was short-lived: Kaia Kanepi defeated her 6-3, 6-0. Getting off the cold, wet court at 1 a.m. didn't help the 30-year-old Schnyder, nor is this the first time she has lost a match right after posting a major win. Schnyder is now 0-3 against Kanepi.

Finally, top seed Dinara Safina defeated Zheng Jie the hard way, which is to say--the Safina way.


Roi said...

Im excited for Martínez Sánchez's game lately. To be honest, i though her Bogota title was a bit lucky but now i see her the other way, she needed a singles title to build confidance and WOW, she's got it!

In just one tournament she has taken down two 2009 title holders... and now Petrova, which is capable of impressive things (maybe not lately though).

Its funny how a great doubles player grows into a great singles player, when usually its the other way around. I bet we will see her in Bali.

Diane said...

I really like the clay experts like Martinez Sanchez, Medina Garrigues and Schiavone (Mauresmo, Schnyder, Pennetta, etc.) To me, they are so much more interesting to watch than some of the other players. And I agree that winning a title probably did a lot for Martinez Sanchez's confidence. I'm glad for her, too.